I’ve been led through a rather radical change of heart in the last couple of years.

I moved to the Peak District because I love the countryside.  I was definitely not a city person.  I still believe that God called me to the beautiful market town in which I live.  And I absolutely love it.  However, I now work predominately in the city of Derby and I serve in a church with a clear vision for the city.  Which makes the city quite central to my life.

So when it became apparent that I could play a part in establishing, growing and multiplying LifeGroups in the city centre I thought it would be a good thing to do.  And having made the decision to do it, I am more excited and enthusiastic about it than I ever would have believed I could be.

Our first group meeting was two weeks ago.  Seven of us met McDonald’s and enthused each other about what God was saying.  Last week twelve of us met in a bar and this week I am confident that more will join us.

There is something really challenging and edgy about this group.  It’s very different from a traditional small group based in a home.  Meeting in bars and coffee shops automatically gives a feel of being friends together.  Every meeting is a social.  And meeting in public places means that outreach is automatically at the heart of what we are doing.  Talking at normal volume about our faith, our love of God, our walk with Jesus and our desire to see the Spirit move, is challenging and fun.  Praying together is scary and wonderful.

Of course, such groups have to be different from what happens in homes.  We are already discovering that.  Plotting a way forward is huge fun.  My enthusiasm feels boundless.  I long to see more groups of this nature growing out of what we are doing and I am confident that they will.  I am confident that in turn we will have a real impact on the people around us.

What better way to be salt and light than to meet, talk and pray in the very bars and cafe’s where so many others are gathered?

And of course, it is a really simple transition for our alpha guests to make.  Already, several have indicated that they will join the group when the course has finished in order to continue their journey.  Which means that the groups will have people in them who haven’t yet given their lives completely to Jesus but who are being drawn to Him and want to continue their journey of discovery.

It seems to have filled me with life again.  I don’t think our Christian lives should feel “safe” in that sense – I like feeling out there, on the edge, putting myself in places where I am totally reliant on God.  But I can only do that when I am confident that He has called me to do it.  And I am confident that He has called me to do this.

I will let you know how it goes.